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Wake Up and Smell the AI Flavored Coffee

If your sales performance isn't meeting expectations, consider this: your competitors might be outpacing you in the AI sales arena. Wake up and smell the AI flavored coffee!

Sales is a numbers game. More calls lead to more opportunities, which ultimately translates to more sales. AI technology offers time-saving benefits, a game-changer for sales teams. When your sellers spend less time on non-selling tasks, they can allocate more time to closing deals.

What exactly are these non-selling activities? Anything that doesn't involve direct interaction with customers or potential clients falls into this category. Think sales meetings, email drafting, restroom breaks, proposal creation, internal processes—all those things sales teams do that take them away from real selling. While AI can't solve restroom breaks (yet!), it can significantly enhance efficiency in other areas.

For instance, imagine a dashing and brilliant consultant aiming to write a blog post about AI in sales. With a simple query to the Bing AI tool (powered by Chat GPT), he received a comprehensive list of how AI can revolutionize sales. Here's the result:

AI offers several solutions for sales teams, enhancing their efficiency and effectiveness in various ways: 

  1. Time-Saving: AI tools can automate manual tasks such as data entry, note-taking, and scheduling, allowing salespeople to focus more on selling and less on administrative tasks¹.
  1. Data-Driven Insights: Sales forecasting, lead scoring, and pipeline analysis powered by AI provide valuable insights that help salespeople optimize their sales process¹.
  1. Increased Productivity: By automating routine tasks, AI tools help salespeople save an average of 2 hours and 16 minutes daily, making them more productive¹.
  1. Improved Lead Generation and Qualification: AI can quickly scrape information and improve the quality of leads, ensuring that salespeople focus their efforts on the most promising prospects⁴.
  1. Enhanced Customer Engagement and Personalization: AI enables hyper-personalization in customer interactions, which can lead to better engagement and conversion rates³.
  1. Content Creation: Generative AI tools can assist in writing sales content or prospect outreach messages, streamlining the content creation process¹.
  1. Sales Efficiency and Productivity: AI helps in making the sales process more efficient by taking over tasks that might otherwise take time away from high-impact sales activities³.
  1. Predictive Analytics: AI can predict customer behavior and sales outcomes, allowing sales teams to be more strategic in their approach⁶.

These benefits show that AI can be a powerful ally for B2B salespeople, helping them to work smarter and achieve better results. 

Couldn’t have said it better myself.

According to the same source, here are the Top 5 AI integrated CRMs:

  1. Freshsales: Known for its AI-powered chatbot tools.
  2. Bitrix24: Offers excellent free sales intelligence tools.
  3. Zoho CRM: Provides broad AI capabilities.
  4. Pipedrive: Excels in delivering AI sales suggestions.
  5. HubSpot CRM: Offers free AI tools¹². 

Salesforce, the 800 lb. CRM gorilla was not mentioned.  Some analysts have posited that the recent drop in share price at Salesforce was a direct reaction to an underwhelming AI integration.  My bet is that if you have Salesforce and you still feel behind, it's because your team hasn't optimized what is available.

Microsoft, owner of Bing who fed me this answer, also did not mention its Dynamics CRM product.  Not sure when Microsoft became so gracious and honest.  The Dynamics system is fairly simple and straightforward.  If you have followed Microsoft recently, their entire company is being retooled to accommodate the huge investment they made in Chat GPT.  Dynamics makes full use of AI tools

How do you know if the sales team has embraced the AI opportunity?  Start asking individual sellers and managers.  A lack of enthusiasm is a red flag.  They should be excited about the new tools that have emerged.

If you sense via anecdotal research that AI is not integrated into your sales functions, it's time to call in senior revenue management and start putting accountability measures in place.  This is a serious deficiency if left unattended.

Competitors who have made AI sales tools an initiative will torch you quickly.  Make this a priority with your sales leadership.  Your sales team should be skipping, and dancing about all the improved productivity they will achieve with improved AI.


Sources:

(1) 5 CRMs That Now Offer AI (and How to Make the Most of Them) - HubSpot Blog. https://blog.hubspot.com/sales/crm-with-ai.

(2) Best AI CRM: 9 Best Software Tools in 2024 - Fit Small Business. https://fitsmallbusiness.com/best-ai-crm/.

(3) The Best AI CRM for 2024 - technologyadvice.com. https://technologyadvice.com/blog/information-technology/ai-crm/.

(1) AI in B2B Sales: How It’s Used and Its Biggest Benefits [New Data]. https://blog.hubspot.com/sales/ai-b2b-sales.

(2) AI in B2B Sales: 5 Ways to Use Artificial Intelligence Effectively. https://www.close.com/blog/ai-b2b-sales.

(3) AI in B2B sales: Why it matters? - Oneflow. https://oneflow.com/blog/ai-in-b2b-sales/.

(4) Using AI in B2B Sales and Marketing: Trends, Benefits, and Insights .... https://sales-mind.ai/blog/ai-b2b-sales.

(5) AI in Sales: The Secret to Closing More Deals | Gartner. https://www.gartner.com/en/sales/topics/sales-ai.

(6) Artificial Intelligence (AI) in B2B Sales: A Founder's Guide. https://rampd.co/blog/ai-b2b-sales/.

 

 

Wake Up and Smell the AI Flavored Coffee
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